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Without approval of breathalyzer, no driving for OUI offenders

When people are convicted for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in Massachusetts, they often face a series of consequences depending on the severity of their offense, before they are permitted to regain their driving privileges. Throughout this time, they may be required to pay fines, undergo recovery programs, pay back people who may have been injured by their actions and even serve jail time in some cases. 

Beginning on January 1, 2019, a new law will require that anyone who has previously had an OUI on their record, be required to have an ignition interlock device that will function as a breathalyzer. Offenders will be unable to start their vehicle until they first use the device and are found to be sober. If the device detects any use of alcohol, it will prevent the vehicle from starting. 

Every offender who is required to have one of these devices in their vehicle will also be in charge of funding the costs for using the product. This amounts to approximately $3 each day. A pilot program in which the device was tested as it will be used beginning in January 2019, revealed a stunning 74 percent decrease in the number of people who reoffended. Offenders should be aware that with their commitment to driving sober, after 12 to 48 months of using the device, they may be allowed to remove it entirely from their vehicle. 

If people have been charged with an OUI, they may wish to hire an attorney to represent them in court. With an experienced legal professional directing their case, they may be able to lessen the consequences of their mistake. 

Source: nbcsandiego.com, "DUI Offenders Required to Use Breathalyzer to Start Engine in 2019," Dec. 28, 2018

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